Other than project planning (yep! not done yet), I met with two of my team members today. Well, I did not physically meet them. One meeting was by videoconference, the other was on the phone. They are both based in Chile.
It is a somewhat difficult to lead a team where half of it in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and the other half is thousands of miles and several time zones away in South America. Currently, the time difference is 7 hours. At best, it is 5 hours. Fortunately, the work culture of the science staff at Gemini South is to come in later and stay well past the official end-of-day.
The time difference, we get use to it. What I find difficult is the impossibility of the ‘pop-in’; I pop in their office, they pop in mine. Having a physical presence makes it feel more like a team. I try to visit Gemini South a couple times a year, but it is not the same.
Despite the difficulties, I still find it amazing the way we all relate to each other. There is a sense of camaraderie. It is fun working with that team.